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Category: Columns

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Summer Hibernation Starts

Summer Hibernation Starts

Enjoy what’s left of your off season routine. Last Saturday, June 21, marked the official start of summer and the arrival of tourists. With the economy recovering, this year we can expect more people in town than ever. Additionally, Irvine has been hurriedly producing new homes with “closeness to Laguna Beach” as one of its […]

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Say No to Car Deaths

Say No to Car Deaths

Editor, How lovely to drive along the Coast Highway, rays of sun painting the waves, shimmering, the white crests pounding onto the sand. If you are fortunate you may even see a formation of pelicans, gliding on the air, inches above the sea. Their instinct guides them to a safe place. They are unlike us… […]

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Be Prepared for Seduction

Be Prepared for Seduction

  Don’t drive a Tesla . . . unless you’re prepared to be utterly smitten by its features and performance and sticker-shocked at the $100,000 plus price tag. I drove the Model S recently and experienced both shock and awe. As a proud, Volvo-driving, tree-hugger living on the retirement income of a community college professor, […]

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Whodunit

Whodunit

There’s an art thief amongst us. “Tableaux vivants” are disappearing at rehearsals. “At first we didn’t notice. There’s so many volunteers backstage, the commotion masked the disappearance,” said a tearful high school student. Another supporter chimed in, “And that painting wasn’t the first. We’re taking an inventory now to see how many paintings are missing,” […]

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Oil for Troubled Waters  American consumers have been unusually restrained over the past five years. The financial crisis shook complacency in reliable real estate investment. It destroyed many jobs, some gone forever. Computers are taking over many functions, boosting business “productivity” but leaving those displaced in the wake. Manufacturing and medical companies are booming but […]

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Magic in Attitude Adjustment

Magic in Attitude Adjustment

  The festival season officially starts this week. Along with the excitement of the summer activities, comes the pervasive ritual that has been honed to a fine art for many of us who have the privilege to call ourselves locals. The Sawdust Festival preview party marks the first formal opportunity to claim the right to […]

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Say Uncles

Say Uncles

Years ago, I dated a girl who was law abiding. You expected me to say she was pretty, smart and kind. She was, but law abiding stands out because her family was not. The uncles were cat burglars. One Christmas, she asked for a 35 millimeter camera. Poof, she got one with someone else’s pictures […]

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Collision Over Preservation and Property Rights

Collision Over Preservation and Property Rights

By Howard Hills After my grandmother Julia Hills passed away in 1963 we bought a new home in Wood’s Cove. Her old cottage above Boat Canyon that we loved was sold and demolished to make way for a church. My wife and kids knew that my sense of loss about my childhood home was one of […]

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Wistfully Wondering

Wistfully Wondering

  “You too, could have gone down a different path,” I thought to myself. In “The Road Not Taken” Robert Frost muses about different choices and the idea of another chance at a decision, “Yet knowing how way leads onto way, I doubted if I should ever come back.” Still, every once in awhile we […]

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Taking Stock

Taking Stock

The Fed Keeps The Course The Federal Reserve continues to keep a gentle but steady grip on the tiller. It lowered its growth forecast for the rest of 2014 although it noted that recovery was continuing, allowing it to take another step backwards from its stimulus strategy. As expected, it cut monthly bond purchases by […]

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Honor Thy Father

Honor Thy Father

  It is time again to formally honor our fathers. The masculine principle is imbued with the task of establishing our ethics and morality. It fulfills its function as a sharp tool of learning what actions and controls are necessary to manifest right choices in our lives. When masculine energy is married to feminine energy, which […]

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Surprising Observations From Down Under

Surprising Observations From Down Under

I visited Australia recently to see my daughter, Gabrielle, 21, near the end of her college semester abroad. With me is my girlfriend, Kim Bowen, who grew up in London but moved to Sydney at 23 and was appointed fashion editor of Harper’s Bazaar, Australia. Heady stuff, especially at that age. For her, this visit was […]

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Are We Helpless When it Comes to the Homeless?

Are We Helpless When it Comes to the Homeless?

By Howard Hills Homelessness has become yet another topic ironically like the weather, everyone complains about it but no one ever does anything about it. Of course, anything anyone proposes to do about it costs too much, is never enough, and will not solve the problem. Did you ever notice that those who complain the loudest […]

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Stepping Around a Sticky Situation

Stepping Around a Sticky Situation

In the last few weeks, some sticky blotches of a black tar-like substance have been appearing on several beaches in Laguna.  Many people assume that this phenomenon is being caused by industrial pollution associated with the extraction, transportation and storage of petroleum. In fact, as much as 50 percent of it is naturally caused by […]

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Canyon QT

Canyon QT

The other day I got a frantic knock on the door. It was too early for pizza, so I ignored it. The insistent knocking continued. I didn’t know Sheldon from the “Big Bang Theory,” so I ignored it some more. There was more knocking, knocking, and knocking. “What,” was my welcome. “We need a man,” […]